Thursday, July 30, 2009 1:30 PM
Mozilla's Firefox browser is about to hit a major milestone: 1 billion total downloads. As you can see on this Twitter account set up to monitor the download numbers, it just crossed the 999,000,000 threshold earlier today. Judging by the rate at which it's increasing, it could hit the milestone as early as tomorrow [update below, it will hit it tomorrow].
And Mozilla is preparing for the big day with a new site (not live yet), called www.onebillionplusyou.com, which will go live on Monday. There, you'll find information about the one billion downloads Firefox has seen, we're told. When the browser hits the milestone, more information should also be available here.
Firefox has made a major dent in Internet Explorer's marketshare over the past few years. The latest numbers put IE's share just over 54%, while Firefox approaches 30%. That's pretty incredible when you consider that just a few years ago, IE had over 90% marketshare.
This one billion number is obviously for all the versions of Firefox, since it was launched in 2002 (though the Firefox name officially took hold in 2004). The most recent version, 3.5, launched exactly a month ago. It zoomed past a million downloads very quickly, and had 5 million downloads after day one ? a huge number, though not quite as huge as the Firefox 3.0 launch.
Update: Mozilla has just sent a note confirming that it will hit the milestone tomorrow:
It?s looking like Firefox will reach 1 billion downloads tomorrow (around 3:45 a.m. PT)! You can find out more here: http://www.spreadfirefox.com/fxbillion.